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Holcim Eyes Deals Drive to Push Beyond Cement, CEO Says

Original source: SwissInfo


Holcim Ltd. Chief Executive Officer Jan Jenisch said he’s looking to continue an acquisition drive at the Swiss building material maker as he pivots away from traditional cement.

Jenisch said in an interview this week that Holcim has “the strongest balance sheet ever, which opens up many opportunities for continued acquisitions and investments.” The CEO said the company sees value in small and midsized deals in areas like building systems, where Holcim can offer solutions from roofing to insulation.

Just this month, Holcim has announced acquisitions of Chrono Chape, a French provider of self-leveling screeds, and Nicem Srl, an Italian producer of limestone used as a lower-carbon replacement for the clinker that goes into cement production. These deals followed the company’s busiest year of acquisitions year on record, data compiled by Bloomberg show, which included the purchase of building solutions company PRB Group.

“Last year we did 20 acquisitions, high tempo. Deals are part of our growth strategy,” Jenisch said on the sidelines of the World Economic Forum in Davos. “We are changing our profile to decarbonize buildings, from green concrete to green roofs.”

Shares in Holcim were trading up 1% at 9:31 a.m. in Zurich on Friday, giving the company a market value of 32.2 billion Swiss francs ($35.1 billion).

The Swiss company has expressed interest in buying US roofing group Duro-Last Inc., which would compliment previous acquisitions including Firestone Building Products and Malarkey Roofing Products, Bloomberg News has reported.

Meanwhile, Jenisch said the company has “good order books.” The company managed to cope with rising prices last year, he said, and it boosted its revenue and profit guidance after the third quarter even amid fears about a downturn.

“In Europe, construction markets have been slightly softer since May 2022 but we see no recession,” Jenisch said. “America is our biggest market and order books are full.”

The US residential sector has been impacted by rising interest rates, but that market represents only a small part of Holcim’s business, Jenisch said.

“The rest is going well, and there are various stimulus programs coming in the trillion ballpark,” he said.

... GO TO Holcim Eyes Deals TO READ MORE

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